Reports Music

Virtual Concerts A New Video Format

Report by Mark Mulligan
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The 20,000 Foot View: The global pandemic thrust the live music sector into chaos, with global revenues falling by            in 2020 compared to one year previously. The music industry was rocked by first-order impacts (no concerts, no fan engagement) and second-order impacts (many artists realising that streaming did not add up without live income alongside it). Necessity, though, is the mother of invention and an unprecedented period of innovation and experimentation followed, creating a whole new virtual concert ecosystem. One that presents great opportunity but that also reflects the flaws of a hastily constructed industry, flaws that must be fixed for the sector to realise its ambition. Rather than the future of live, virtual concerts represent an entire new video product strategy.

Key Insights

  • The            pandemic            global live music revenues down                       from            billion in 2019 to            in 2020, disrupting artist income,            turn highlighting artist and songwriter            with streaming royalties
  • Virtual events            kickstarted by the pandemic, with            streams of virtual concerts in            and with            of consumers regularly            live streams, albeit still less            half of the            that used            regularly attend real world concerts
  • Live streaming            transitioned from free to paid,            Bandsintown reporting the number of            live-streamed concerts posted on its            up from            in            2020 to            end November 2020
  • Live streamed            viewers are younger than traditional            goers and more likely to            male            compared to           
  • Live streaming            driven by a quantum leap            artist demand; home-bound consumers with            time; a wider shift to            and a widespread consumer desire            be connected
  • The virtual            value chain is defined by            and a vast array of            trying to own as much            the value chain as possible¬†
  • Live streaming            more consistency and structure, with            strong case for a circuit            virtual venues, sophisticated monetisation and            distribution ecosystem
  • Live streaming            a new video format that            be to live music what            is to sports: a lucrative,            hybrid licensing / pay per           
  • Ticketed live-streamed            generated            billion in 2020, which            grow to            billion in 2021            all live revenues) and will                       billion in 2027
  • The outlook            virtual events will be defined            contributing to diversified artist income;            the small venue gap for            artists; delineating traditional artists from            artists; format and business evolution;            new games models

Companies and brands mentioned in this report: Amazon, Driift, Epic Games, Fortnite, Facebook, MelodyVR, Minecraft, Sessions, Twitch, YouTube